In an effort to help maintain social distancing to combat the coronavirus, the Presbytery office is currently closed to visitors. Most staff are working remotely and email will be monitored and answered in a timely manner. Emergency contact information can be found at the end of this communication. Stay safe!
June 26, 2020
PWNC NEWS & EVENTS
The 224th  General Assembly  (2020) Ends Tomorrow
Watch the livestream on the  224th GA website  or on the  Facebook Spirit of GA page . An online Assembly Docket for the virtual meeting can be found  here .

Just the FAQs?  
Anyone who wants to understand how the General Assembly is operating can explore the  224th GA website . Questions about how and why this assembly is scheduled for fewer days and without committees are addressed, and information is provided about business being recommended for consideration this year or in 2022, the consent agenda, and many other matters—   here’s the FAQ .
The GPNC is delighted and deeply grateful to report that it will present a candidate for the next General Presbyter of the PWNC at the presbytery meeting on July 28, 2020. The nominating committee has unanimously voted to nominate a candidate to be called, and the candidate has indicated readiness to accept that call, pending a successful examination and vote of the presbytery. Please continue to keep our next General Presbyter in your prayers as we look forward with anticipation and hope. 

To maintain confidentiality as the process works its way out, full details will be shared with presbytery on July 21 st with opportunity to send questions to be asked of the nominee by the moderator in our online meeting. More information about our process for the meeting is being developed by COM and General Council and will be shared presbytery-wide as details are completed.
Next Level Facebook Live

The link below might be of particular interest to you. It was shared by Pastor Whit Malone of First Presbyterian Church of Hickory. Stated Clerk/Acting GP Cam Murchison has reviewed the content and says it is really helpful. Hope you find it beneficial as well!

Rev. Neal Carter, Pastor of Rocky River Presbyterian Church and Rev. Alice Ridgill, Associate General Presbyter of Charlotte Presbytery, discuss "Next Level Facebook Live Worship Service Streaming". Enjoy!

Helpful Information

CLICK HERE to read the Pastoral Letter sent June 5, 2020 to the Presbytery of Western North Carolina from Lauren Vanacore, Chair of General Council, Jill Isola, Chair of Peace and Justice Committee, Cam Murchsion, Stated Clerk and Acting General Presbyter, and Billy Robinson, Associate Presbyter.

CLICK HERE to read the most recent communication sent from the Task Force on Returning to Face to Face Gatherings in PWNC.

Sessional Records Update

Due to COVID-19, all face to face Sessional Records reviews have been suspended for 2020. Read how this process will be handled in the following communication from Cam Murchison, Stated Clerk/Acting GP: 2020 Sessional Records Review
Don Walker to succeed Judy Freyer
as BOP Chief Investment Officer

The Board of Directors of the Board of Pensions has named Donald A. Walker III to succeed Judith D. Freyer as Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer. The appointment is effective July 1, 2020. Ms. Freyer announced her retirement in March after more than 30 years at the agency. She will remain as Chief Investment Officer Emeritus and assist in the transition through July.

Click here to read the full release from the Board of Pensions.
COME: June, July or August
STAY: 3-5 days or longer
COST: Room prices vary ( Use discount code PCUSAPRO for 50% off)
SAFETY: Read about our safety precautions on our website
New PC(USA) resource offers theological and practical guidance for those deciding on when and how to worship in public again
The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has just released “ Returning to Public Worship: Theological and Practical Considerations ” for congregations and leaders in the midst of making decisions about how and when to return to public worship in the wake of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

While strongly encouraging churches to follow state and local rules, regulations and guidelines as minimum standards for re-opening, the resource includes:
  • a pastoral statement on reentry to public life and worship
  • PC(USA) constitutional considerations and risk evaluation
  • a provisional timeline for resuming public worship
  • general considerations for returning to public worship
  • specific guidelines organized around the order of worship
  • links to additional resources that may be of interest.

According to the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II, Stated Clerk of the General Assembly of the PC(USA), this resource will help churches make faithful and responsible decisions about reopening for public worship.

“We are a church in transition changing each and every day,” he said, “truly reforming to keep up with contextual realities of our day.”

The Rev. Dr. David Gambrell, associate for worship in the PC(USA)’s Office of Theology and Worship, worked on the resource with the Office of the General Assembly and colleagues in Theology, Formation & Evangelism.

Acknowledging this is not a one-size-fits-all document, and that sessions and presbyteries will make decisions based on the latest COVID-19 developments and local circumstances, Gambrell said one of his primary concerns was to provide resources to help church leaders think theologically and pastorally about their decisions.

“Congregations and leaders need to use their own wisdom and judgment, informed by other experts, as they prayerfully discern how and when to return to public worship,” he said.

For Gambrell, the critical thing is that PC(USA) congregations continue to be the church, and the body of Christ, in this complicated time as decisions are being made, even as information and understanding about the coronavirus is changing all the time.

“As we move through these challenging times, we must seek the mind of Christ, stay connected, care for each member and honor the gifts of all,” he said.

The offices of Theology and Worship and Christian Formation in the Presbyterian Mission Agency have released a one-page document,”  Beginning Conversations for Re-Entry ,” for use with both the “ Returning for Public Worship ” resource and an updated “ Remote Faith Formation For the Long Haul with Guidelines for Re-Entry .”

Written by Paul Seebeck,  Presbyterian News Service
Getting Through the Corona Crisis

As we are traveling through the current turbulence, some of us are choosing to look for the positives. We wonder if God might be providing a season for morphing and reinventing. If so, the people of the earth can evolve and become more caring for one another. Yes, some of us even anticipate having more 'Good Samaritans'. Toward that end, I offer to Presbytery this article from "Forbes" magazine:  
 
ESSENCE OF ARTICLE
Years ago, the anthropologist Margaret Mead was asked by a student what she considered to be the first sign of civilization in a culture. The student expected Mead to talk about clay pots, tools for hunting, grinding-stones, or religious artifacts. But no. Mead said that the first evidence of civilization was a 15,000 years old fractured femur found in an archaeological site . . . This particular bone had been broken and  had healed .
Mead explained that in the animal kingdom, if you break your leg, you die. You cannot run from danger, you cannot drink or hunt for food. Wounded in this way, you are meat for your predators. No creature survives a broken leg long enough for the bone to heal. You are eaten first.
A broken femur that has healed is evidence that another person has taken time to stay with the fallen, has bound up the wound, has carried the person to safety and has tended them through recovery. A healed femur indicates that someone has helped a fellow human, rather than abandoning them to save their own life.


Wash your hands, 
Tyler Martin

(Reverend Martin is an Honorably Retired Minister of PWNC.)
Future Presbytery Meeting Dates & Deadlines for 2020:

July 28 th Presbytery Meeting (virtual format)
  • June 29th Overture Deadline
  • July 2nd Packet Deadline for Written Reports
  • No PowerPoint presentations will be shown at this meeting

October 24 th Presbytery Meeting at Waldensian
  • September 28th Overture Deadline           
  • October 1st Packet Deadline
  • October 8th PowerPoint Deadline
A Friendly Reminder . . .

With the current pandemic of COVID-19, please keep in mind that the events listed herein are very fluid and subject to change.
PWNC OFFICE HOURS
Monday - Thursday: 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Friday: 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

EMERGENCY CONTACTS
Rev. Dr. Cameron Murchison, Jr. ~ 404/556-8041
Rev. Billy Robinson ~ 828/448-2153
Rev. Dr. Charles Davenport ~ 704/689-0296
Presbytery of Western North Carolina | 828.438.4217 | www.presbyterywnc.org